Tracy Arvidson of the Sand Springs Animal Shelter spoke at an October 9 City Council meeting about improvements the shelter’s made in recent years.
Specifically, Code Enforcement Manager Andy Templeton said they city reduced the amount of dogs euthanized from 29 percent in 2016 to 4 percent in 2019 and the amount of cats euthanized from 99 percent in 2016 to 10 percent in 2019 and increased their live release rate from the shelter from 40 percent in 2016 to 92 percent in 2019. The number of dogs impounded was 424 in 2016 and 493 in 2019 and the number of cats impounded was 221 in 2016 and 249 in 2019.
“The number of dogs has increased, the number of cats has increased somewhat, “ Templeton said.
He said there is a $65 adoption fee from the shelter that helps cover things like spaying, neutering and vaccinations. He said the shelter also relies on foster families and volunteers to help care for animals.
Templeton said the city’s been able to buy more cages for cats because of more money available in recent years. Arvidson said the shelter’s started a new community cat program that involves trapping stray and feral cats, sterilizing them and putting them back in their environment.
“What animal control has done (in the past) is trap stray and feral cats and euthanize them—it doesn’t work, the cats reproduce faster than you can trap them and euthanize them. So what we’ve found is if you trap the cat, sterilize them and put them back in their environment, they keep the other cats out of the colony so they’re not reproducing,” she said. “In the meantime, you’re not having the overpopulation problem, the cats are vaccinated for rabies, they’re spayed…it’s worked a lot better.”
The city has also gotten a new washer and dryer and tub for washing animals in recent years.